Near the end of last year I created a site called Meet Jaco. It's basically a site with a couple of lists - what I do, hobbies, personality traits etc. At the bottom there's a button that allows the visitor to send me a message or even chat to me in real time if I'm near my computer. It was an online, social experiment to see whether people would click on the button and start chatting with me - perhaps even becoming friends.
Quite a few people have asked me whether it was successful - did I meet any new people? To those people I usually give a wry smile and don't answer at all. Wouldn't they like to know!
Well, today I'll take the cat out of the bag: it's been an overwhelming success. I've received a continuous stream of message from people all over the world for the past couple of months. I'm not sure exactly how the site has spread as far as it did, but I now have amazing acquaintances from about 50 countries that I've never even been to. I've received many invitations to visit these folks, and honestly if I had more money and didn't enjoy my current lifestyle as much I would probably fill my passport by the end of the year. When I created the site, I felt socially isolated. Now I feel whatever the inverse of that is.
I've been chatting to these folks almost every night since the site launched - so if you haven't heard from me lately, it's because I've spending a lot of my free time making friends on the internet. It's been quite tiring to be honest, so I'm thinking of taking the site offline one of these days. For now, however, the site is still online, so if you haven't done it yet, go click on that button!
(If you want me to make you a similar site - sure, I'd love to, if you pay me. Get in touch.)
Note: this post is just a joke. Only three people contacted me, and two of them I knew before. It's quite disappointing, I really thought I might have some interesting conversations.